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Week 8 DraftKings Cash-Game Picks

By Jared Smola 10:25pm EDT 10/27/23

Top Plays for Head-to-Head and 50/50 Contests

Here are the guys I’m zeroing in on for DraftKings Week 8 cash games:

 

Quarterback

Jalen Hurts, Eagles ($8,200)

This is a week to pay up at QB. 

Hurts, Patrick Mahomes ($8,400), and Lamar Jackson ($8,100) are all facing bottom-4 defenses in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs.

I’m leaning Hurts in the game with the most shootout potential against arguably the worst pass defense in the NFL.

The Commanders rank:

  • 27th in passing yards allowed
  • 30th in passing TDs allowed
  • 28th in yards per pass attempt allowed
  • 27th in pass defense DVOA
  • 29th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to QBs

Hurts went for 27.2 DraftKings points vs. Washington in Week 4.

And the Commanders just coughed up 21.7 DK points to Tyrod freakin’ Taylor last week.

This is a massive mismatch.

 

Running Backs

Alvin Kamara, Saints ($7,300)

Kamara has seen absurd volume since returning from his suspension: 17.3 carries and 9.8 targets per game.

His 26.6 expected PPR points per game over that stretch are 4.5 more than any other RB.

Kamara has averaged 21.7 DraftKings points per game, despite scoring just one TD.

It’s worth noting that HC Dennis Allen said earlier this week that he’d like to lighten Kamara’s load going forward. But he could lose 25% of his current volume and still be a strong value at $7,300.

Kamara gets a plus matchup on Sunday vs. the Colts, who rank:

  • 18th in run defense DVOA
  • 13th in RB coverage DVOA
  • 26th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs

Isiah Pacheco, Chiefs ($6,100)

Pacheco continues to dominate work in Kansas City’s backfield. He’s averaged 16.3 carries and 3.5 targets per game over the last four weeks, handling 72% of the team’s RB opportunities. 

Pacheco is in a pristine spot on Sunday with his Chiefs 7-point favorites over the Broncos with a big 27.0-point implied total – tied for second-highest on the main slate.

Denver ranks 31st in run defense DVOA and dead last in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs, supplying a 98.8% scoring boost to opposing backfields.

Pacheco tallied 15.8 DK points vs. Denver back in Week 6, which feels like his floor.

Breece Hall, Jets ($5,900)

Last time we saw Hall, he was scoring 20.3 DraftKings points against the Eagles, who rank first in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs.

Prior to that, Hall smoked the Broncos for 31.4 DraftKings points.

More importantly, Hall set season highs in snap rate in both games – 52% vs. Denver and 66% vs. Philadelphia.

He also played an expanded passing-game role in Week 6, registering season highs with a 60% route rate and 15% target share.

Now Hall comes off a bye week for a plus matchup against the Giants, who rank 30th in run defense DVOA and 22nd in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs. New York has coughed up 5.0 yards per carry to opposing backs.

Also consider:

  • Christian McCaffrey ($9,200)
  • Travis Etienne ($7,200)
  • D’Andre Swift ($6,300)

 

Wide Receivers

Adam Thielen, Panthers ($6,600)

Thielen headed into his Week 7 bye with back-to-back games of 30+ DraftKings points. 

He’s averaging 22.6 DK points on the season – and 26.5 since Week 2.

Thielen has basically been an extension of the run game for Carolina, hauling in 83% of his targets on a short 7.8-yard average target depth. That usage makes him a safe weekly bet.

The Texans rank a middling 14th in adjusted fantasy points allowed to WRs.

Zay Flowers, Ravens ($5,600)

If we’re not playing QB Lamar Jackson, it’s nice to at least get a piece of the Ravens passing game in Sunday’s plus matchup vs. the Cardinals.

Flowers has been one of the more consistent target bets in the NFL this season. The rookie has registered a 21+% target share in five straight games and six of seven overall.

He’s failed to hit double-digit DraftKings points just once all year.

The Cardinals rank 22nd in adjusted fantasy points allowed to WRs.

Josh Downs, Colts ($4,800)

Downs has scored 13.7, 13.1, and 26.5 DraftKings points in QB Gardner Minshew’s three full games.

He’s averaged 8.7 targets on a 21% share in those contests.

Downs would be in play in cash at this price even in a neutral matchup. But he gets a good one this weekend.

Slot CB Alontae Taylor is the weak link in the Saints’ secondary. He ranks 61st in Pro Football Focus coverage grades and 41st in passer rating allowed in coverage among 71 qualifying CBs. And he’s questionable for this game with a hip injury that he picked up in practice this week.

New Orleans has given up some big games to slot receivers this season, most recently Christian Kirk’s 6-90-1 line last week

Downs has played 76% of his snaps in the slot this season.

Also consider:

  • A.J. Brown ($8,000)
  • Drake London ($5,100)

 

Tight End

Trey McBride, Cardinals ($2,800)

TE Zach Ertz’s trip to IR opens up a big opportunity for McBride.

Cardinals TEs have combined to average 9.9 targets per game on a 30% target share through seven games.

Ertz has seen 6.1 of those targets on a 72% route rate. Those are fair projections for McBride, who has a nearly identical target-per-route rate as Ertz this season (22% vs. 23%).

And McBride has been much more efficient than Ertz. McBride ranks top eight among 34 qualifying TEs in yards per target, yards per route, and Pro Football Focus receiving grade. Ertz ranks 25th or worse in all three metrics.

This matchup is tough against the Ravens, who rank sixth in adjusted fantasy points allowed to TEs and ninth in TE coverage DVOA.

But McBride’s volume projection at this price tag makes him an easy cash play.

 

Defense/Special Teams

Vikings ($2,500)

Let’s pick on Packers QB Jordan Love, who’s been inaccurate all year and has now started racking up the INTs. He’s tossed seven of them over his last four games.

The Vikings are averaging a solid 8.1 DraftKings points per game.

Also consider:

  • Browns ($3,000)
  • Bengals ($2,200)

 

More Top DraftKings Picks:

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